Oborne on Chilcot: ‘He has done his job. It is not a let down’
Sir John Chilcot, the chairman of the inquiry examining the UK's role in the Iraq war, has "done his job", Middle East Eye columnist Peter Oborne said on Wednesday following the report's long-awaited publication.
Oborne, whose book Not The Chilcot Report drew on the evidence given to Chilcot to deliver his own scathing assessment of the conduct of Prime Minister Tony Blair and his government, intelligence officials and military leaders in the run-up and aftermath of the war, told MEE that the report was "not a let down".
He said it did not leave Blair with a "leg to stand on", was "brutal" on the security services, and "pregnant with significance for the British state because something clearly went significantly wrong."
"He has fundamentally gone to the heart of the matter, he's shown that Mr Blair's government took Britain into an unnecessary war," said Oborne, speaking after journalists had seen the report for the first time.
"It was a war, and Sir John Chilcot makes no bones about this, that led to the most terrible and devastating consequences.
"What is clear is that he hasn't fudged many issues. He basically accepts that the French and the Russians were right and Britain and America were wrong.
"Some people might be disappointed that he doesn't say that Tony Blair lied. It seems to accept his protestations that he believed what he was saying but on the other hand it shows again and again that what Mr Blair said was not actually true."
Watch Oborne's full reaction above.